Batley Bulldogs hoping to maintain derby momentum against Swinton Lions

RESILIENT BATLEY Bulldogs can complete an impressive Easter double – and make it three straight wins in the Betfred Championship – at home to Swinton Lions today (3pm).

By Peter Smith
Monday, 22nd April 2019, 5:30 am
Batley coach Matt Diskin.
Batley coach Matt Diskin.

Bulldogs backed up their victory over Widnes Vikings – and bounced back from a shock Coral Challenge Cup loss at Doncaster – when they rallied from 8-0 down to win 20-8 away to Dewsbury Rams three days ago.

That was despite having Wayne Reittie sent-off in the first half and Michael Ward sin-binned soon afterwards.

“In terms of working hard and character and grit and determination, it was a fantastic effort from our boys,” said coach Matt Diskin.

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“There was certainly a bit of adversity with the sending-off and sin-binning and to come through that showed the character we have.

“I was really proud of the group we’ve got.”

It was only Bulldogs’ third league win of the campaign and Diskin admitted the important thing now is to use it as a platform.

“We have got to build off the euphoria of that win,” he stressed.

“The momentum and energy it creates, we have got to take that and back it up, which is a tough task at Easter.

“Looking at the work rate of some of our players, it is tough for them to back-up, but we have got to do it to try and get our season on track and start picking up the wins we know we deserve.”

Bulldogs produced a huge defensive effort against Rams which could take its toll today, but Diskin insisted: “If you’re going to have a man sent-off or sin-binned, Dewsbury’s the pitch to do it on because it’s so small and compact.

“The boys did work extremely hard for each other and it was a really solid team effort.”

Batley will be without Tom Lillycrop today due to a calf muscle strain suffered on Good Friday.